All school girls in Seychelles, will at the start of the academic school year January 2022 have access to sanitary pads free of charge in all state and private schools as well as in professional centres across the island. This was made formal during a donation ceremony held this morning held of the SITE Auditorium, where a supply of sanitary pads were donated by VIJAY Construction Limited, in the presence of President Wavel Ramkalawan and the First Lady Mrs. Linda Ramkalawan.
During the ceremony, President Ramkalawan described this achievement as a defining moment for the country as it continues to collaborate with key partners and make greater strides in implementing actions that will benefit all girls as future women of Seychelles. On behalf of Government and the people of Seychelles, the President conveyed sincere appreciation to Mr. Vijay Patel for accepting to make the donation and allow Seychelles to join other countries around the world that have embraced this same concept.
“Today’s donation which is of national importance is allowing us to provide access to sanitary pads for all our girls, marking an important milestone for Seychelles in not only ensuring the product is made available free of charge but as a symbolic gesture of our respect of the dignity of all our girls. I am even more encouraged by the fact that this initiative stemmed from a motion presented by a member of the National Assembly, Hon. Regina Esparon where regardless of gender or political views it received unwavering support and a unanimous vote on the motion put forward. This is a testimony that as a unified voice we are able to agree and support one another when it comes to a most worthy cause in support of all girls in Seychelles. I would like to thank Hon. Esparon for putting forth the motion and Mr Patel for leading us to what we have managed to accomplish today” said President Ramkalawan.
The decision by Government to launch such a project was initiated by a motion tabled by the Member for the National Assembly for Glacis who is also the Chairperson of the Women’s Parliamentary Caucus, Mrs Regina Esparon where in her intervention before the National Assembly declared menstruation as a normal health related process for women and girls and called on Government and stakeholders to start discussions on making sanitary products tax free, more affordable and accessible for women and girls.
As part of the symbolic donation this morning, representatives of all secondary schools accompanied by their Headteachers were present to receive the donation from Mr Patel. The donation includes a first a consignment of six months’ supply of sanitary pads of which schools will thereafter extend their supply according to the needs of their respective schools.
On his part, Mr Patel said he is honoured to have had the opportunity to provide a helping hand especially as he believes sanitary pads for all girls is not a luxury but rather a necessity. He expressed the wish that the excellent partnership and collaboration with Government continues in efforts to keep lending a helping hand to support the community.
Also present for the event was the Minister for Education, Dr. Justin Valentin, Members of the National Assembly for the Women’s Parliamentary Caucus, Principal Secretary for Education Sector, Mr John Lesperance, Principal Secretary for Family Affairs, Mr Clive Roucou, Ministry of Education officials and other distinguished guests.
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